The Digital Landlord

Nick Tadd, landlord, co founder of propertytribes.com and exponent of digital products. AKA web geek!

There’s no denying that I’m a geek.  I think the web is brilliant – the ‘instant gratuity’ that it delivers is second to none. But now we’re in the third evolution of the web the power that it can bring to landlords via the many digital solutions it offers is even more powerful.

Firstly let’s understand what an ‘app’ is. An app is a singularity that delivers what you want in a manner that you want without any fuss. A kettle is an app.  It boils water and it connects to the electrical grid not the internet – a fridge is an app too, it keeps things cold! YouTube is an app, it allows you to watch video on the web. Your bank probably has an app that allows you to do your banking – Google is an app, it helps you find stuff. My point is the latter fall into the category of ‘digital’.  These are products, sites, apps that are very useful, efficient, and streamline processes, saving time, therefore money!

Here are a few that, in my opinion, help the landlord.

Yulpa.com

Yulpa was born out of necessity. I have quite a number of properties, and as I’m sure you all know each property delivers a huge amount of data. Either, e-mail data, letters, photos, contracts.  It/they have multiple people involved from solicitors, brokers, agents, maintenance, tenant communications etc etc. And I remember sitting at my desk surrounded by boxes, thinking ‘there must be a smarter way of dealing with all this data?”

So I had a go.

There are only three things you have to do to be a Landlord – acquire a property, own/manage a property and dispose of a property. Each one of these has it’s own nuances, but essentially that’s it.

Yulpa takes care of each one of these three things … all in one place.

Acquisition: Due diligence is one of the most essential parts of making an acquisition.  You should never purchase anything on a whim or the say so of any third party – the best person to trust is the one you see in the mirror.

Homework & research needs to be undertaken to understand your investment from every angle.

Whilst looking at a property you can, with the help of your iPhone, ‘fire up the yulpa app’ and gather the data for the property you are in on the phone itself. This will take the shape of words i.e how many rooms, outside space, condition etc and augment that data with pictures and video. In other words that data you would have done in the past but written down on paper.

Then sync the data on the phone with the web site. Yulpa then takes over and gathers the due diligence data for you by reaching out to the platforms you would have looked at in the first place and producing it for you in a scrapbook. Data such as sales and rental comparables, crime data, transport data, broadband speeds etc etc. It also has calculators in it for testing refurbishment returns, yields and mortgages. It also allows you to communicate with your ‘third party’ suppliers via the scrapbook page on the web so they can leave their notes attached to the potential purchase.

It keeps all the data together which, in turn, allows you to make the right decision and eliminate potential flaws.

Management: The day to day running of a portfolio takes time and demands efficient control – a PMS is needed (Property management System).

Yulpa is a PMS, and it will manage the day to day running of your portfolio. All you have to do is input the data as and when you get it and yulpa will ‘sift it’ into order and produce useful infographics as to how your portfolio is running at any given time. This will allow you to be able to make any changes needed before they cause any problems.

At the end of the year it will give you the data that you need for HMRC effortlessly.

Disposal: This will be either sales or lettings, either way a professional web site for the potential sales or let will be needed, and you can do this on yulpa.

You can create a ‘google-able’ page for your property so you can show case it on the web.  Moreover, it gives you control over sales/rental data. Even if you want to use a letting/sales portal they can get your professional words and pictures from your properties own page. On that note we have teamed up with uPad.com that allows you to send your rental particulars to them and they, in turn, fire them out to over 1000 rental portals including rightmove and zoopla.

All this from one site. All this from a digital product that is built with the sole purpose of assisting a Landlord – I’m one, and it helped me.

For further discussions and views on being a Landlord in the Digital Age, please visit the Digital Tribe of my Property Tribes forum.

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